A Travellerspoint blog

2019 Ship to Shore. Russia, Scotland and more

Coming to an end

overcast 16 °C
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Today we are back in London for the night before boarding our flight back to Melbourne bringing to a close our holiday.
The Caledonian Sleeper was the overnight train that left Inverness last night arriving at Euston Station this morning with us on board. The train is tired and as in the process of being replaced. We were supposed to be on the new one but it has been held up with issues!!
Not to worry as we are here now.
Our 8 week holiday was full of highlights from the Fjords of Norway and picturesque Saint Petersburg to the rolling hills and mountains of Scotland.
Queen Elizabeth transported us seamlessly ( and very comfortably ) throughout the Balkans and Fjords exposing us to wonderful places, sights and people over the 4 weeks we were on board.

Our land travels by self drive saw us traverse from London to Durness at the top of Scotland with memories to cherish in between.
We travelled approx. 1600 klms over the 3 weeks up hills, down dales, small lanes, freeways, around small villages and large towns.

We stayed in Bed and Breakfast establishments, hotels and Self catering apartments of varying standard through out our journey. And of course Matts pub at Tangley "The Fox Inn" where we had an enjoyable stay and catch up with Matt and his daughter Millie. Matt is Celeste and Kerry's cousin who has made his home in the U.K.

Kerry and Andrew are good travel companions and we enjoyed many a laugh and shared the sights and discoveries of the trip.
The weather gods were very kind to us as in the main the sun shone for us over the holiday.
A great trip with many fond memories.
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Posted by pjandc 06:07 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (1)

2019 Ship to Shore. Russia, Scotland and more

Culloden Moor

sunny 19 °C

Culloden Moor where the Jacobite's met the English Army in 1746, was a very interesting stop today. Try to imagine 2000 people dead, from both sides, in less than 1 hour and the futility seems obvious.
The two sides line up against each other with the ground underfoot, which must have been boggy and awful.
Slaughter followed with the Jacobite's being cut down by a superior fire power.
The field is marked out and the visitor centre very informative.
As with other battle fields, we have visited over the years, this one is peaceful and belies the devastation and horror that unfolded here.
We then went to the Clava Cairn stones. This is a site over 4000 years old and was a burial site. This also is well preserved and very peaceful.
The day is warm and totally different to when Kerry was here 7 years ago ( windy, wet and cold )
A walk around Inverness then out to pick up our repaired car, before heading back to our accommodation.

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Posted by pjandc 11:11 Archived in Scotland Comments (0)

2019 Ship to Shore. Russia, Scotland and more

Inverness and Whisky

sunny 15 °C

The drive from Durness to Inverness was a pleasant one with a couple of distilleries that we called on but closed !! The stay at Durness was a fantastic one with Rhona and Ray two great hosts.
Our stay at Inverness is for 3 days to take in the area. The accommodation is very good.
Next morning I took the car to a Panel Beaters to try and get it fixed. I am in luck as they can do it. Down side is it cost $900.00 cash. Oh well better than the car company charging whatever they feel like.
We travelled with Kerry and Andrew in a big loop to Fort William and both sides of Loch Ness.
A stop at Tomatin Distillery was a good one. Down the road we stopped at Dahlwinnie Distillary and had a tour that was very informative especially with a tasting at the conclusion.
Lesson over we went to Spean Bridge then onto Fort Augustus before looping back to Inverness.
Lochs, great scenery and memories collected through the afternoon before finishing our day back in Inverness.

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Posted by pjandc 13:40 Archived in Scotland Comments (0)

2019 Ship to Shore. Russia, Scotland and more

Durness Scotland

sunny 23 °C

Our accommodation is a very pleasant Bed and Breakfast situated just outside town on a hill overlooking fields and the ocean.
The weather is a pleasant 23 degrees but feels cooler due to the wind that is quite strong and blustery.
A drive to Smoo Cave coupled with a walk was very enjoyable. It is only about 10 minutes from the accommodation so it didn't exert too much stress on any of us.
We drove a bit more around the goat track roads still marvelling at the scenery of Scotland before heading back through town to the Art area where we had coffee and hot chocolate and a wander around the shops.
It is still quite busy here and accommodation seems to be still at a premium.
Overall it has been a relaxing day and the afternoon faded away. Dinner is down the road again as we enjoyed it so much last night.

Tomorrow it is once again onto the goat tracks ( one way in, one way out ) on narrow roads to Inverness.

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Posted by pjandc 09:56 Archived in Scotland Comments (1)

2019 Ship to Shore. Russia, Scotland and more

The road to Durness

sunny 23 °C

Last night i saw the Northern Lights. They were not coloured but white and bright. In all places it was in Gairloch. Our host notified us and i went for a look. I ventured out again an hour later to see if they had improved. No they had disappeared. Oh well beggars can't be choosers.
The drive to Durness on the North West Coast was another great drive.
Lochs, valleys, narrow windy roads and mountains were the focal point.
Every crest was a "what will we see now" moment.
The weather has been very kind today with a top of 23 degrees.
We stopped at Ullapool to visit the tourist information centre to try and get accommodation for tonight. Wow it is hard to find accommodation but the lovely person there ( Cristina) rang around and found 2 beds in a B and B.
The North Coast 500 is providing us with more awesome scenery than can be photographed so in the end you just take it all in. 15 minutes out from Durness and an idiot in a B.M.W figured he had right of way and tried to push past me. Great! He put a scape down my door from his back bumper and drove away. No time to turn around or take number plates. He was gone!! Dog!!
Durness seems a lovely spot and the evening meal at the pub was so good we booked for tomorrow.
Durness is the most North Westerly village on the British mainland. Our accommodation is comfortable so we are staying 2 days exploring here before we travel to Inverness.

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Posted by pjandc 14:00 Archived in Scotland Comments (0)

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